If you’re one of the folks who binge-watched right through Ginny & Georgia when it first arrived on Netflix, (and based on how long it stayed in the Top 10 shows, that was a whole lot of us,) the wait for Season 2 might be starting to feel a little long. Netflix’s breakout hit stars Brianne Howey and Antonia Gentry as the title mother-daughter duo, who move to a suburb of New England in the hopes of starting a new idyllic life, but quickly come to realize Georgia’s less than picturesque past might not be so easy to leave behind.
The addictive dramedy of dark secrets has already been given a Season 2 order for 10 more hour-long episodes, but it’s going to be a while before fans can make their official return to Wellsbury, so we’ve put together a list of the best shows like Ginny & Georgia to watch during the wait. From obvious inspirations like Gilmore Girls to the equally bingeable suburban moms-gone-bad series Good Girls, whether you’re looking for more teen romance or snappy dramedies, here are seven shows that should hit the mark.
Well, let’s just go ahead and get the obvious one out of the way. Gilmore Girls is such an obvious inspiration for the dynamic between Ginny and Georgia they even directly name-checked at the start of the series. And if the writers of a show you love are directly referencing an inspiration, there’s a pretty good chance it’s gonna hit the right spot if you’re looking for something to watch after your binge. The beloved early-aughts series stars Lauren Graham as Lorelei and Alexis Bledel as Rory, the titular Gilmore Girls, a fast-talking, super cute mother-daughter duo navigating love and life in a small town. You won’t find many life-or-death secrets on Gilmore Girls, but if it’s the mother-daughter dynamic that got you hooked, you can never go wrong with this all-timer comfort show.
Teenage Bounty Hunters
If you were won over by Georgia’s southern charm and go-getter spirit, you can get a double dose of similar energy in Netflix’s Teenage Bounty Hunters. Executive Produced by Orange Is the New Black creator Jenji Cohen (who obviously knows a thing or two about creating binge-worthy content), the short-lived 2020 fan-favorite stars Maddie Phillips and Anjelica Bette Fellini as a pair of twins who stumble into a Bounty Hunting business and decide to make the most of it. Teenage Bounty Hunters is witty, endearing, propulsive TV and just generally has a similar vibe to Ginny and Georgia, not just because of the snappy dialogue and southern charm, but a shared interest in the messiness of coming-of-age sexuality, female-driven narrative, and a completely charming ensemble.
My So-Called Life
To understand just how far teen dramas have come since the beginning, we have to know where they started. But the funny thing about My So-Called Life is that while it premiered 27 years ago, it still feels achingly real and relevant today. In part that’s because of its revolutionary (at the time) approach to its protagonist’s inner turmoil — instead of dismissing the ennui of 15-year-old Angela (Claire Danes) as just teen angst, Angela’s feelings are taken as seriously as any of the other major issues facing the show’s characters, from Rickie’s (Wilson Cruz) sexuality to Jordan’s (Jared Leto) struggles with literacy to the marital problems of Angela’s parents (Tom Irwin and Bess Armstrong). Everything feels pretty dramatic when you’re that age — but much like Ginny & Georgia, what My So-Called Life recognizes is that sometimes things feel like a big deal because they are. – Liz Shannon Miller
Friday Night Lights
Let’s be clear, Friday Night Lights would be a recommend for Ginny & Georgia fans even if both shows didn’t happen to share a cast member. (They do, of course, and it’s great to see Jason Street Scott Porter in action again.) While G&G creator Sarah Lampert‘s spin on dramedy is a lot more light in tone, the seminal NBC series also featured a lot of family-focused teen drama with the occasional random burst of crime. Most importantly, much like Ginny & Georgia the very real issues being faced by the young people of Dillon, Texas were given the heft and seriousness they deserve. While a football-obsessed small town might seem hundreds of miles away from an upscale New England suburb both figuratively and literally, in reality, the two shows feel very much in sync. And believe me, if you’ve never had the pleasure of sinking into Friday Night Lights before, you’re in for a delicious, delicate, and immersive treat. – Liz Shannon Miller
If the element of crime lurking just beneath the prestige and polish of suburbia speaks to you, start watching Good Girls immediately. Starring one of the most inspired casting lineups on TV, the NBC drama stars Christina Hendricks, Retta, and Mae Whitman as a trio of hard-working moms tired of the grind and in need of some serious money who decide to take the matter into their own hands by robbing a local grocery store. Naturally, things spin out of control faster than you can say “you really didn’t think that one through” and they wind up immersed in a criminal underworld they never knew existed. It’s funny, sexy (hellooooo Manny Montana), and expertly paced to keep you hooked, stacking on the twists and never letting the characters off easy. Bonus points for the best use of (the chronically underrated) Matthew Lillard in ages.
Dead to Me
You won’t find the teen drama and the jokes are a lot darker, but another suburban crime thriller that might scratch the Ginny & Georgia itch is Netflix’s similarly bingeable Dead to Me. Created by Liz Feldman, the series stars Christina Applegate and Linda Cardellini as two grieving women who strike up a fast and intimate friendship during their group therapy. But they’ve both got their secrets, and as Jen (Applegate) grows increasingly ferocious and erratic in her quest to find the hit-and-run driver that killed her husband, the series unfolds a darkly hilarious (and I mean dark) and razor-sharp series of twists and turns. Applegate and Cardellini are both doing some of the best work of their careers here, vaccinating between precise comedic delivery and tremendously vulnerable explorations of grief and trauma. And their chemistry is unparalleled; a live-wire, snap-crackle-pop duo you can’t take your eyes off of – seriously, it’s very very hard to hit pause on this show. The second season isn’t quite as tightly wound or deliriously funny as the first, but it’s still a showcase for two of the best performances on TV right now that never stops making the stakes higher and the secrets darker.
Never Have I Ever
One of the highlights of Ginny & Georgia is the way the series depicts high school friend groups as empowering and supportive without ignoring how complicated those hormone-fuelled dynamics can be. In that regard, you’ll find a fine match in Never Have I Ever, the coming-of-age Netflix comedy co-created by Mindy Kaling and Lang Fisher. The series arrived like a feel-good gift just when we needed it during the onset of the pandemic in 2020 and it’s every bit as charming and heartfelt as that endorsement implies. You won’t find secret criminals, shady schemes, or seductive moms here, but the shows share a lot of spirit in the careful attention they give to teenage female friendships. And for me, a highlight of both is how they handle the challenges of teenage sexuality, from reconciling the boundaries between friendship and lust to coming to terms with queer sexuality amidst the pressures of high school.
Looking for your next fantasy fix? These shows will do the trick.
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